How would I dye the white parts of a red and white shemagh and not affect the red?

Name: Gene


Dylon fabric dyes, 10 pebble beige, 50 g

Dylon Fabric Dye
Pebble Beige

Dylon Permanent Fabric Dye last much longer on the fabric than all-purpose dyes do. Fixative is included in every pack. Also requires salt.


Rit dye liquid 8fl oz tan

Rit All Purpose
Dye Liquid

All-purpose dye cannot be used for dye painting, only for dyeing the entire piece with the same color of dye. Wash dyed garments separately in cool water. 


Country or region: USA

Message: I have a red and white shemagh. Can I dye the "white" of the shemagh to "Desert Tan" and leave the bright red? How would I dye the white and not affect the red?

Red is a particularly intense color (since a pale red is merely pink). If you dye your red and white cotton scarf a pale tan color, the red parts will still be red even after having tan added to them. Overdyeing with tan makes colors less brilliant, but even at a slightly less brilliant shade, your red will still be red. Obviously you should go for the palest tan that you will find satisfactory, so as to change the brightness of the red as little as possible.

Alternatively, you can add a thickener to your dye, if you use a good fiber reactive dye such as Procion, stretch your scarf out over a frame made of wood or plastic, and carefully paint dye onto just the white parts of the scarf, using soda ash in the dye or as a presoak in order to fix the dye. (You cannot use all-purpose dyes, such as Rit, for the painting method, because they run so badly that you end up with dyeing the whole piece anyway.) This painting method would avoid dulling the brightness of the red even a little, but it would be a huge amount of work.

You can buy a fiber reactive dye in some fabric or craft stores--look for Jacquard Procion dye, or Dylon Permanent dye--or you can order the dye online. Dylon Permanent dye contains the fixative already mixed in with the packet of dye. If you buy Jacquard Procion dye, you will need to get some sodium carbonate, which is sold as soda ash by dye suppliers, and is also available as washing soda in most grocery stores.

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Posted: Wednesday - January 22, 2014 at 09:30 AM          

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